From where the dream started; from the people who nurtured a gem who would later become the doyen and shining light of Africa’s journalism, Multimedia, with its flagship station Joy FM remembers Komla Afeke Dumor in a fitting night of music and poetry.
His death has shattered many across the world and tonight staff of Multimedia and friends of the iconic broadcaster have gathered at the precincts of Joy FM to honour the late Komla Dumor.
His journalism career started with him riding on motorbikes on the hot scorching morning sun in Ghana, reporting the traffic situation in the capital in what used to be called the mobitel traffic watch on the Super Morning Show. Komla’s hard work earned him a deserved place as host of SMS. For ten years he blazed the trail as host before leaving for the BBC where he rose to become a super star until his sudden death on January 18, 2014.
Hundreds have gathered to remember; to honour and to celebrate the late Komla Dumor.
Doreen Andoh, Ivy Hayward Mills who were right there with Komla when the dream started are the MCs for the time being. Rev Kofi Okyere opens the sombre occasion with a word of prayer; he would not have done that without a quick inspirational song. He commits the occasion into the hands of the maker, the giver and taker of life.
Ivy Hayward Mills introduces COO of MultiTV for his opening remarks.
Klaus Von Backustein Chief Operating Officer for MultiTV eulogises Komla Dumor as an institution of excellence.
Doreen then introduces Samuel Atta Mensah (SAMENS) of Citi FM and once a key member of Joy FM.
He was there when the dream started. He says right here in this premises (Joy FM) we saw a career that sparkled like a star. Komla was the art and science of radio. He confesses how Komla told him in South Africa to write a book to share memories and experiences. Little did he know that he would share these memories on the Remebrance Day of Komla death. “Komla defined excellence. He broke the rules and defined the rules.”
Chapter O, the gracious Hearts of Oak supporters Group, a group Komla was so fond of, takes their turn. It is a short singing and drumming session as the men in rainbow colours pay homage to one of the greatest Hearts of Oak supporter.
MCs take over as they read some tributes from the close associates of Komla.
Rev Owusu Ansah, takes his turn with another prayer. Its time for another musical interlude as Celestine Donkor takes the stage with a powerful rendition of ‘You raise me high.’ Donkor has a talented way of singing in her local ewe dialect. She does just that.
If Komla was an icon in radio; Prof Atuquaye Okai was an icon in Ghana’s poetry. Prof takes the stage to honour a man who could easily be his son with a piece he says was commanded by Komla and his father without their knowing. It is a poem he wrote in 1960 mixed with other contemporary poems. The good old professor begins with a Russian rendition of one his poems. A celebrated poet he is.
Picture scroll; video show
Friends and former colleagues of Komla look on as pictures, video roll. Asanka delight as the late Komla Dumor show his cooking credentials.
Eulogy by Kwasi Twum CEO of Multimedia
Kwasi Twum the man who spotted the talent and gave the talent the wings to fly is shattered. He would not speak not only because he is shattered but because he is camera shy. Mamavi on behalf of Kwasi Twum reads the eulogy. KT as he is affectionately called, says Komla filled us with great pride as he outclassed all at the world stage.
Its time for exhortation and Rev Eddy Fabin does it so well.
There is a short musical interlude by a choir. Amazing Grace the voices sang in sweet soothing melody drawing tears from SAMENS who returns to the podium with a poem. But the Samen’s poem is cut short as he bows his head in tears.
Von Backustein also shares his memories he had of Komla and begins a roll call of employees and former colleagues of Komla at Joy FM.
The roll call reunites colleagues who passed through the walls of Joy FM but who are engaged in other businesses. Rev Owusu Ansah, Rev Eddie Fabin, Azigiza Jnr, Paul Adom Okyere, Matilda Asante Asiedu, Eva Okyere, Samens, Ken Ashigbe. The list also included the late Dusty Wayne, Amos Ballington Ghanney. The former colleagues line up in front of the podium, had red ballons; ballons which they later allow to fly high up into the sky. Ballons that will never return to them just like Komla won’t. With the sounds of Tupac Shakur’s ‘The way it is’ one of the favorite songs for Komla, the soldiers dance solemnly in honour of the late Komla Dumor.
That ends the first part of the the service. Doreen and Ivy make way for Bola Ray to take over the second part.
Bola mounts the podium and shares little touching memories he had and secrets he shared with Komla. Komla broke the news about his nomination as the face of the BBC for the upcoming World Cup and charged him (Bola) to get a list of some prominent guys to pass through the BBC before the world cup. That conversation was Friday night. Komla died on Saturday.
Nana Asasi takes his turn with another poetry in honour of Komla and what a masterpiece it is.
Bola returns with a memory of how Komla gave him and Akwasi Sarpong a ride in a new car he Komla bought. It was a ride Bola will never forget in his life. The fastest ride ever in his life. It is the turn of Mawuko Zormelo to share his fondest memory about Komla.
Mawuko was the Komla’s ‘bride’ in the infamous April fool scandal that shot the two men to fame. Zormelo shares his fondest memories about Komla and for the first time in a long while the crowd burst into laughter at Zormelo’s joke.
Mr Philip Ayenso, and Eugenia Takyi Menson all former colleagues of Komla share some of the most funny and fondest memories they have about Komla.
Its music time and its time for some of Ghana’s music icons- Amakye Dede and the music man Kojo Antwi to honour the late Komla Dumor.
Amakye Dede the Seeerrrious man sings ‘Su fer3 wo nyame’ to wit cry and call on your God. It is short and sombre but the Amakye nonetheless pays his dues to Komla. Then comes the music man Kojo Antwi who rallies the crowd with his soothing rendition of one of his songs.
DSP Kofi Sarpong takes the stage with his own rendition.
Felix Vanderpalin former host of Joy FM’s Lunch Time rhythms joins Bola to MC the programme.
Azigiza Jnr also shares his fondest memories he has about Komla Dumor. DSP Kofi Sarpong returns with some of his great tunes as colleagues dance the night away to end a memorable remembrance service in honour of the late Komla Dumor.
From your friends, colleagues here at Joy FM, Myjoyonline, Komla Dumor we say Rest in Peace. Your revolution still goes on.